Thanks your prayers and support... I can't believe its been five months since leaving Portland.
I would like to update everyone on what my life at Mercy is like and ask for prayer.
Mercy in general, and also Outland and their ministry with the ropes course and youth programs
prayers for all the staff at mercy
For those that are about to finish at Mercy to leave in July
Our support is due in a couple weeks
Samal- 1x a month (sat) a few mercy girls go to the foursquare gospel church on Samal and do prenatals (i attend the foursquare church in davao)
Isla Verde - Badjao patients, many of them are muslims, they speak a different dialect, very poor, they live out over the water 2x a month (thurs)
adgao (thurs) 2x a month
talikala ( see below for more info) (wed)
outreaches to the bukid (mon-friday) starting in Tagpopoot and going up into the mountian in the Davao Del North province (prenatals, health teachings)
The church that I am attending her in Davao
Davao Foursquare church
the ministries that are going on at the church
compassion international program
young adults and children programs
I may also start attending a Muslim Background Church in the Sasa area of Davao. (so I will attend that church when am not working day shift on sundays and then attend the foursquare church in the evening or the sat night service) A few missionaries in Davao have come to Mercy to shadow and help with health teachings. One of the missionaries is N she works with the Muslim population in the city. She is currently in Thailand. The pastor of the church is an american, his wife came from a muslim background. All the other memembers grew up within the Muslim community but came to Christ. I love just sitting down with her and just hearing all the stories of how God is calling Muslims to himself. The vision, dreams, the passion that they have is so amazing. They lose everything when they make that commitment to leave Islam and follow Christ. In some parts of the island a person who turns to Christ can be killed and the one who kills the new believer gets 1000 peso (its about $23 US). Its not just here in the Philippines but so many other areas.
The IMB missionaries that work here in Davao are coming back from time stateside in a couple of weeks. I'm excited to meet them, and get to know them as well. I've been in contact with them for the last year, asking about Davao and the work that the IMB does here.
I am finally back working on assignments, currently interpartum, so labor and delivery, working four shifts a week and every other week I have prenatal outreach,
- I'm once again taking Cebuano Classes twice a week.
The requirement for our Cebuano class is to be able to do prenatals all in Cebuano, share the gosel, prepare and teach labor and delivery health teaching, and share our testimony
please pray that the language would come easily, we have until may to do everything listed above
- With each assignment and exam taken though the USA midwifery board we have to pass with at least an 80%, i would love prayer that I would be able to manage my time wisely and be able to finish my assignment in proper timing so I can use the assignment as a study guide and not be stressed trying to finish an assignment before taking an exam.
- starting the 23rd i ( 1st and 2nd years) will be taking microbio, ( short but busy 2 week course only 4 classes) along with the next midwifery subject
sometime in Feb we will be starting a series on Chruch planting and also how to start and manage a maternity clinc within other countries. : ) ( I am super excited to start this series of classes)
- I already have A&P course taken at CC last year, which is so so nice, a huge relief!!! but please lift up the other 1st and 2nd years that haven't taken the course (1-2 months long) because they start that class along with micro ( so they will have two classes plus a midwifery assignment, and the church planting class)
Within the last month I've taken countinuity patients.... So I am their primary midwife doing prenatals and also though delievery and postpartum.
- The first cont I took is due in June, very sweet girl, I ended up taking her as a cont after prenatals one day, for when I asked if i could pray with her. She at first refused and walked away but then turned around and started crying because didn't know how to respond because no one had ever asked her if she needed prayer before.
- Muslim lady having her 2nd baby due in May, Please pray for wisdom as I get to know her, and speak with her. She is really stressed right now, family issues, she texted me saying that she was super stressed but didn't say much more than that.
- Next cont is having her first baby end of Feb. At first it seemed like a normal prenatal however I noticed by her interview she was Muslim, most of the time when I see Muslim women come into Mercy I like to greet them in Arabic and just give a warm welcome. She didn't repond to the greeting very well. She look at me like I was crazy, she kept saying you not muslim, how do u know that greeting and replied she wasn'tMuslim, I'm a Christian. Its a weird way to break the barrier and start a friendship but God know what is best.
I know I spent at least an hour with her that day, going over nutrition, health, she began to open up all because of saying one phrase. Anyways, right after high school she went off to bible college and then came home and married a Muslim Man. So please pray for her bana (husband) from what she has told me he is protective, he won't let her go to church. She is so desperate for fellowship, she is so aware of everything around her. Please pray for wisdom as I spend time with her, use wisdom in texting her. Her husband is supportive of me being the primary midwife for her. Yay thank you Jesus!
- I have a cont is due anyday she is almost 41 weeks, she came into mercy at 37 weeks and asked me to be her midwife because she didn't want to go into the birthroom without knowing someone. So I did.
- I know very little about her except that she is 17 and a single mom, i did her first prenatal in nov and she was rescheduled for fridays, and I am on the prenatal friday team. So I took her as a cont after talking to my super.. She is really really shy,but very aware of what is going on, and she is unsure if she wants to keep the baby. I know God can break down the language barrier and my prayer she would be able to be open with me. I can see that she wants to talk, but she doesn't know who to trust.
I would like to invite people to pray for a new ministry (prenatal outreach) that has started though mercy. Every Weds a few girls from Mercy work with Talikala
They are getting involved in an organization here called Talikala that "offers support, advice, training, and counseling to women and girls who have been forced into the sex trade here in Davao.
- please pray for wisdom as some of the staff works with these women.
Its been such a blessing to be apart of Mercy, to be apart of something that is of God. His heart for the nations, His love for people is neverending, He wants the whole world to see Who He Is. I've come to love each of the girls here at mercy, each person has a story to tell, each person has a ideas, visions, and dreams of being a midwife and impacting the world. Other girls that came to mercy are working in places such as Afganistian, India, Sudan, the States, Philippines, China, Thialand, and so many other places. Some want to work with the abused, those that find themselves in the sex trade, some want to work among the poor, in the slums, inner city, other in rural area, some in the high mountains,other want to go where no one has gone before, the unengaged ( no know witness or christians within that certain area), the unreached ( less than 2% of the population is Christian), some want to go back to their hometowns, others with the tribal groups, some with native americans, some with Muslims, others want to work with those that are Hindu. Yet we all have midwifery in common, we are all here at Mercy, we are in the Philippines where God has called us to go, to be together, to pray, to guide each other, to encourage each other, to build friendships, to make an impact, to dream together, to refocus and to gain the knowledge the skills needed to go out into the world and share Christ.
Its two year of crazy schedules, piles of paperwork, 100's of pages of midwifery assignments ( a great resources at the end, your own personal midwifery book).... Is it worth it... yes!
Most of you know a little bit about my vision of how I feel God is leading me to use midwifery. Mainly so I can have a job that will allow me to get into countries. Foma Hope - (foma- fulfulde word for Hello) Hello Hope.... the idea that I may be able to bring the tools to help muslim women as a midwife, yet it also has the spiritual meaning that I may be able to speak hope in a place of so much darkness. My heart is for the unengaged, the ones that have never heard the gospel, the rural areas that get overlooked. To work among muslim, maybe africa, maybe Pakistian, who knows except God. Africa was where God began to give me the desire to work with Muslim Women, its where the vision began.Walking though the streets on Niger, Niger has the highest infant and maternal death rate in the world. Yet God showed me Hope in the midst of darkness and my desire to be the light in the darkness. So other may find the hope that is in Christ. I know it seems scary sometimes to think about,( going into the Muslim world) I wrestled with idea of working with Muslim for the first two months in Africa, you hear all the stories, that Muslims are bad, they can't be saved, its not safe...( at 19 I didn't know what to think except finally surrender it to God) and say okay your will be done, God if its your will i want that to be my desire as well... ( the only place you can be safe is where God calls you to me, it could cost your life?... the question is would u die for Christ? )
Yet as I hear the stories of Muslim coming to Christ, my first thought is how many don't know because people are afraid to go, how many don't know because no one has spoken the name of Isa (Jesus). It breaks my heart. Here at Mercy I see very few Muslim women, yet whenever i do I step out of my comfort zone and love them, even last friday i was greeting one of the Muslim patients in Arabic and it was so amazing to see her smile on her face, at first she was unsure, but she soon replied back and kept repeating that one of the girls knew the arabic greeting to her 14 year old daughter. It made her day and mine... : ) simple things can mean so much, and open so many doors.
Sorry that its kinda long. I miss you all so much! May you have a blessed week!
Until all have heard